According to Matthew Artz of the San Jose Mercury News, the battle between The City of Oakland leaders and Raiders owner Mark Davis took another turn this past Tuesday as the city submitted an updated stadium financing plan to the NFL that could set the stage for a protracted fight if the team is not allowed to move to Los Angeles next season. The five-page letter signed by Mayor Libby Schaaf and Alameda County Supervisor Scott Haggerty included no new offers of public money for the team. With NFL owners meeting next month to potentially decide which team(s) get to move to LA, Mayor Schaaf said Tuesday that the league and Raiders fans “understand that Oakland does not have a big check to write.” Raiders owner Mark Davis, who received a draft version of the letter, took it as a sign that the city wasn’t serious about reaching a deal. Davis speculated that “They just don’t want to play (negotiate) with us. I don’t know why, I don’t understand it.”
While the City of Oakland wants the Raiders to head the stadium project, it also wants the stadium to be part of a much larger development that would generate significant tax revenue. Mayor Schaaf said the city was open to a deal that would give the Raiders control of the land, possibly through a long-term lease, but only if it included benefits for the city and came at a fair market price. Meanwhile, with the help of an NFL stadium loan, the Raiders are offering to pay $500 million toward an estimated $900 million, 55,000-seat stadium. Davis said that controlling all of the Coliseum land would put the Raiders in position to bring aboard an investor to buy up to 20 percent of the team, invest in the stadium and potentially develop portions of the property into the “homes, shops and offices” that the city wants.
Davis commented that “The (funding gap) comes down with equity in the team, but right now we don’t have any land to go out and do anything with.” Mayor Schaaf said Tuesday that development rights to the surrounding land could go toward stadium financing, and the city has offered to finance the estimated $90 million in infrastructure improvements needed at the stadium site. Not including any specifics for a stadium deal, Mayor Schaaf’s letter focuses on the Bay Area’s thriving economy and the Coliseum’s prime location. If and how much that will matter to Davis and the Raiders, the mayor admitted is up in the air. The mayor went on to say that “At the end of the day, a lot of this is for the Raiders to decide, and we are really hopeful that the Raiders know that Oakland is part of the Raiders and the Raiders are part of Oakland.”
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy acknowledged late Tuesday receipt of the letter, stating that “It is consistent with what we had been expecting as we have been in close contact with various officials.” There was no further comment by McCarthy or the NFL.
The letter can be read in full by here : http://issuu.com/bayareanewsgroup/docs/nfl_ltr_12-29-15/5?e=2878064/32285917
Star tuned to WWW.RAIDERSGAB.COM for more on the potential new stadium and possible move to LA.